It came down to the fact we required an email address and password for IAP so you could bring your subscription to the web or other platforms. While everyone else in the category did this, they decided that policy was going to change and we were just going to be the first people to deal with it. Since having an email-based account was core to the architecture and the UX, I went through a week of refactor hell to make emails/passwords optional to meet our launch date.
Since other apps still get to do this, it's clear the policy change message was BS. I've suspected a lot has had to do with Apple's ambitions in the streaming space and their desire to be in a position to offer bundling and other over the top services. They're already trying to control the UX with the TV app and are offering companies better rev share rates to do the integration work.
It seems like Netflix is daring Apple to pull them from the store. If that's what's happening then I applaud them. I understand that Apple may think they're protecting the consumer by creating a walled garden, but as a developer whose livelihood is tied to their decisions, I'm tired of being jerked around.
To be fair, that’s not the only reason the TV app was created. Most notably:
– Users want a single place to keep track of all the shows they’re following across all services. Streaming services weren’t coming up with a cooperative solution for this, so Apple did it instead.
– Plainly put, a large chunk (if not most) streaming service apps suck. The TV app adds value by letting users skip the choppy, inconsistent, badly organized, lowest-bidder browsing UIs so many streaming service apps have and get straight to watching this week’s episode.
I like the TV app and wish it did more. I wouldn’t be bothered if I never had to open a service-specific app again. All I need is a clean, frustration free way to browse the libraries of the services I subscribe to.
But most apple users don't care to have very limited capabilities as long as the core value is here and it's streamlined in the apple experience. Hell, they used a phone without copy/paste for a long time and it didn't bother them.
I'm responding to the post about "innovation" of apps that not possible if everything goes through the TV app as a central launching pad for videos.
Following price and size trends, the next industry would be making a device ~1/50th the size of a "smartphone". Something like the size of a large SD card, probably.
edit: added Apple TV
Isn't that the problem Trakt  solves?
Imho, we've got to solve that "single place" problem, because it creates a winner-takes-all situation. Not just with apps, but also taxi-cabs, food-delivery, etc. Perhaps a government should step in and say that you can have a "single place" but only if you don't abuse your power.
For some more insights and viewpoints, see:
The phone made the flow of non tech savvy users the main source of income.
Before, you had to please geeks, and they thought about products, compared, communicated, criticized and decided where to spend their money.
Now, you have to please people that chose products based on ads, design and trends, but don't have any basic understanding of their device yet makes a lot of noise when they get them self in trouble.
That's the same story anywhere you start with a group of passionate people on something that proves successful: amateurs arrive, then money, then policy.
Any job, hobby, venue, city, sport, product, etc. is susceptible to this problem.
It's why the mt Everest is now an expensive highway full of frozen shit, why battle net turned into an insult party, why Adventure park now have those unusable security systems that take the fun out of it, why websites abuse "target=_blank", why you have weird safety messages on microwaves and why you need to provide medical certificates for so many stupid things now a day.
It's also why you can have a device in your pocket that act as your camera, tv, music player, news provider, landline, game console, pager, gps, phonebook for a 10th of the price of a gigantic calculator from 40 years ago.
In the hilarious canadian comedy, "The Decline of the American Empire", the main character makes a point, stating there are 3 things that makes a winner in history: 1, number. 2, number. 3, number.
control what apps can have access to with smartphones
The problem is that a lot of users don't want to admit that they are not competent to decide whether the app truly needs those permissions or not.
If there would be a power user subscription for Android, it'd be great. It'd pay for itself, etc. (Of course purists still could just root the device and so on.)
Apple is at one extreme blocking even legitimate things for obscure and esoteric reasons. Google is at the other, letting all kinds of crap in the store only to review it later, maybe. 
I'm sure my remark ruffled feathers on some Android fans but it doesn't make it less true.
I’m saying that with millions of apps in the store and seeing that all app testing is black box testing, the reviewers are not going to catch most things. The operating system itself should not allow certain things. There is no reason that most of the permissions that SpyPhone needs should be allowed by Android.
It's a two part answer probably: Apple's store policies are discouraging some of the unwanted behavior, and the actual enforcement of those policies is stricter. Not just a second though.
Ad Blockers - the framework is built in a way that third party ad blockers can be installed but they don’t have access to your browsing history. They basically just submit a JSON file that is integrated into Safari and some types of web views
Third party keyboards - because of the opportunity of keyloggers, you have to explicitly go into settings to install one, then you have to give it permission to access the network as a separate step after a huge warning, and even then when you enter a password, iOS switches back to the default keyboard.
SafariViewController - with traditional embedded webviews, the hosting app has complete access to everything you are doing. The SafariViewController runs as a separate process.
The only way that an app on Android can (could?) know if it should stop playing sound was to ask for full permissions to access your phone state.
Why does any app need full access to my storage like Android allows? With iOS, an app has full access to its own file store in iCloud, you can grant it access to your photo library or music library (read only) but it’s very explicit. Any other document outside of those, the user explicitly tells it what file to open.
Why would I ever give a third party app access to my SMS messages? Why is that even an option on Android?
I download stuff without regard on my iPhone because I know that it can’t do anything crazy.
Even if SpyPhone didn’t go through any review process, it’s a track surface is limited on non jailbroken iOS devices.
That's essentially what I had to say. Apple enforces these policies - and sometimes will go overboard. I still very much prefer it to what Google does where as a user I feel they are completely neglecting to "take my side". I am not their valued customer, I am just a source of personal data.
Seems more like a justification for passive acceptance to me.
It's annoying that candy crush get a piece of your private life.
But it's nowhere close to the problem of big entities that already have a huge control on your life to be able to know everything about you while you can't know anything about them.
The app store is just a symptom of it though, and a small one.
Just saying; phones are not as important to everyone as you think.
(yes, I am over 40)
Yes that was a popular post on Slashdot years ago.
In fact, research (in the UK) suggests that people who use phones less are more likely to watch TV than people who use them a lot.
It wasn't my intention to "boast" that I don't use a phone much. The post I responded to was making a point based on the assumption that "we" have our phones on 100% of the time. I was just trying to point out that there are people in that "we" for which that is not true.
iPhone defined the image of the smartphone and they started internet first with a curated appstore.
Also remember that in day to day life, from a user perspective, there are more benefits than downsides to the AppStore. Even today, finding software, software update, compatibility, license management, consistent original media availability, ... are actual problems in the desktop (especially windows) world and almost non existent in the iphone/smartphone world.
To go back on the topic. I do hope that the TVApp does succeed, otherwise eventually a market actor will solve the problem and someone will wonder in 10 years how we ended up with cable companies again.
Other smartphones in this space at the time (Windows Mobile and Blackberry) didn't quite capture the imaginations like Apple did. WM was fairly easy to sideload apps to; not sure about Blackberry.
I believe this is still the only way to get the Humble Bundle app/game installer on your phone. https://www.humblebundle.com/app
And it's not "sideloading." There's no other local device involved. Once you've flipped the "unknown sources" switch, you just go to a website, download, and install, same as you would on a desktop.
And the tech press played a huge role in this with their blatant bias as well in my opinion.
A healthy platforms war would have ensured that Apple/Google would have had to think twice about some of these practices.
For some reason, though, we don't tolerate Seattle City Light choosing to arbitrarily not supply electricity to another company, or Cupertino's water utility charging extortive rates to Apple, just because the latter has deep pockets.
Short of opting out of smart metering (which you can do), your pretty well stuck with a vulnerable meter in much of the US.
One that attempts to use that functionality to get around the App Store's guidelines, especially one as prominent as Spotify's, will be noticed and yanked from the store.
In addition to having to pay money to develop on their platform, the return I get is questionable.
The straw was that they're forcing me to republish old programs, just to force them through their new compliance tunnels.
Frankly, I'm sick of their hoops and their walled-garden. I'm ok with forcing users to the browser now. Amazon does it for digital sales.
The point of republishing old programs is to make sure they are running against the latest SDK. This is an important aspect for the ecosystem. It forces apps to work properly on the latest OS as well as support technologies like App Thinning.
It's not just to mess you around for compliance reasons.
Should the developer/development have to resubmit to the benevolent platform? Or should the platform have to support the development that has occurred?
I don't really care, but I know that I'd rather develop somewhere where my contributions aren't under constant threat of being wiped off the landscape.
Again, good luck with the other thing.
In Apple's world: The users come first. Everyone else second.
You don't have to buy dongles from Apple.
I am a developer but if more developers put users before themselves, we wouldn't have Electron apps.
Perhaps since this is the Google app the URL they show for long touch is not actually what is getting executed when you tap, maybe they are sending a routing command directly, but either way there's a number of UI "nudges" to push you to Apple Maps over Google Maps that you cannot adjust or turn off without jailbreaking the phone.
I did the same from Chrome. It took me to Google Maps
I went to a third party web site within Chrome, click on "get directions", it took me to Google Maps.
Moral panics come first. User second. Developers third.
Miles ahead of native, and hundreds of miles ahead of mobile. For the most part, the web is one of the most future-proof platforms you can develop for, if not the most future-proof platform you can develop for.
But there's still room to improve.
The web is probably second, though. Either the web or Windows.
Any tricks and additional uses you develop for the abacus will likely long outlive any IBM if it's worthwhile. That doesn't mean it's particularly easy to develop something people will find worthwhile enough to propagate forward though. Backwards compatibility only matters as long as you have something that ca take advantage of it and a need to do so.
Sure a website from 1996 will look the same. It will also have no accessibility, work terribly on mobile, be largely like reading a Word document and have none of the interesting features of modern web sites. Your world is not the world most people want.
And while the various accommodations for accessibility that have come up over the last two decades are nice, the fact is that most of the web was fairly accessibly using specialized user agents (or even just Lynx) by the very late 90s.
Let's not, that's a tangent. The original statement to which you replied was this:
> A website from 1996 will look much the same in a modern version of Chrome. Good luck with your SDKs.
That remains true, despite the advances you listed. http://www.thekrib.com/ is an example from 1994 which still looks like it renders about the same. It doesn't have the bells and whistles, but the point is, _what was written remains available._ Interactive applications tracking a moving SDK cannot be left for future generations, they have to be maintained. Putting non-interactive content into those types of applications is forcing a maintenance burden forevermore.
But as yet websites don’t control rapidly evolving and privacy sensitive hardware on mobile devices. Also, user time spent in apps versus web browsers is hovering around ~90% versus 10. Might it be possible that having an up-to-date experience as it’s enforced by mobile platform owners could contribute somewhat to this abundant user preference for apps?
Are you sure that’s the only reason? I can do in app purchases with Udemy that required an account to be used everywhere.
I also know that Hulu, Pluralsight, Netflix, and Evernote all work this way.
> Since other apps still get to do this, it's clear the policy change message was BS.
I am a developer of a dozen very popular apps and I couldn't disagree more with your position.
Developers having a wonderful experience or sustained livelihood isn't the goal here. It's to make sure consumers are protected and cared for. As Tim Cook would put it that's their North Star.
Also, I’m still not clear on how OC’s app was treated differently than others in the space. From his description it doesn’t sound out of the ordinary to me, but I suppose it’s possible I’m misunderstanding something.
Not that the current administration is going to be performing any anti-trust litigation anyway.
The reason we don't have anti trust litigation is because neither GOP and DEMs are interested to do it and that's because these companies since them got smarter and heavily lobby.
Corruption all the way.
Let me get this straight. A for-profit company providing a marketplace that has allowed you to sustain a livelihood as a developer is now be considered as "jerking you around". This is truly fascinating.
A company wielding their quasi-monopoly power to change the rules of the game at the last minute on a whim is precisely what I'd call being "jerked around".
Sorry, but if Apple's policies are applied consistently (I know they often aren't), this won't fly.
I have an app with a basic email/password sign-in screen (the app represents a small part of a larger web-based SaaS product). Apple has rejected my app for including anything in the app that even remotely hints to the service existing outside of the App Store. This includes a "Sign Up" button linked to the web signup, a "Learn More" button that links to the website, or even a "Support" button that has navigation that can lead to a signup or pricing page. After a long chat with someone from the App Store review team, I learned that you can't link to any page of a site that contains other links that can indirectly lead to a signup or pricing information. It's a pretty harsh policy.
So my app was finally approved, but without any links to support documentation on my site. Congratulations, Apple - you win :)
As a suggestion regarding your situation... obviously its more work but you could always open the support pages in a webView that blocks the purchase urls via .
Activist investor style.
And you’d need a $100 billion fund to even get noticed. Even Warren Buffet isn’t calling the shots at Apple.
You’d have much better success by spending a fraction of the money to hire goons to kidnap Apple’s executives driving home from work and “convince” them to change corporate policy that way.
For the majority of apps, the App Store doesn't provide discovery. It provides a nearly frictionless delivery and purchase interface. That's worth something, but not 30% off the top. That's worth a premium on top of processing fees, like X cents per transaction and Y% of the transaction, where Y < 6, I think.
Edit: I should say, I don't think there's any way this is going to happen. It would take an anti-trust action to make any difference, but that's not likely to happen.
Look at profitability of Android vs iOS — almost universally iOS makes a far greater profit that more than offsets the commission. I wouldn’t want to buy an app outside of the App Store because frankly, I don’t trust most developers with my personal information nor do I trust them to not engage in practices that are contrary to my privacy or enagage in sloppy coding that might subject my device to security risks. As a consumer, the App Store is great.
There are lots of b2b apps that are fully sold on the Enterprise level and the app is simply an add on. It is very frustrating to have to work within the walked garden when this is the case.
As a consumer, I’d love to buy a phone, not a content distribution straight jacket.
I well remember the state of Windows during Win 98 and XP where most had no idea what they were downloading, and it seemed every machine had malware, hidden pop ups and 37 IE toolbars. I was constantly asked to clean up friend's machines from the damage done by Kazaa and its associated garbage or some other drive-by crap.
If a restrictive app store is the cost of avoiding that and gaining some minimum enforced standards, safety and confidence to avoid crapware, I've actually come to think it a price well worth paying.
The fact that Google are so laissez faire about the Android app store, and let so much crap in, just further highlights the potential benefits that Google aren't fully providing.
The fact that you are here typing this reply right now is entirely because of the state of Windows during 98 and XP. It's a balance between security and freedom. You are arguing for the benefit of security while ignoring the effect that freedom has had on the last 30 years of computing.
OP is establishing that there are different types of users with different usage requirements.
You and Grandma are very different users. Grandma is probably much better served by an iPad and App Store than a true general computing device. Grandma is also not going to invent the next internet.
Maybe we should embrace this dichotomy instead of pretending one size fits all.
Interesting aside: How much innovation does the world miss out on if we raise the next generation of users on locked down "Grandma" interfaces?
And secondly, since you can't install the next internet on the iPad, Grandma is never going to get to use it.
That's my point though. One size fits all doesn't work all that well in practice. As a technologist you seem to prefer the freedom of general compute. As a fellow technologist, I agree. We are a minority though. The vast majority of people don't seem to want much more from their devices than a working browser. (and maybe Instagram). To them things like root access are more a liability than asset.
> Grandma might not invent the next internet on an iPad but your kid is also never going to get that opportunity.
This is a real concern to me. What happens when whole generations view computers as black boxes of consumption rather than tools of creation / something to tinker with? Probably nothing good.
You're already seeing it. Most people under 35 have likely spent most of their "computing time" by playing games on game consoles, which are precisely black boxes of consumption. And this is the result: walled gardens.
But that's how every generation since computers existed has mostly viewed them; tinkerers have been a small minority, even if young tinkerers-of-computers were an iconic image associated with the first generation in which that was a possible thing. That wasn't because they were common, but because it amazed (mostly older) people that they existed at all.
But I really don't like the fact that they are fully gated devices. Apple has already keep useful, but competitive-to-them, applications off their platform. They've force developers to eliminate user-beneficial changes to their applications. This is not good even for non-technical users but it's much more difficult to quantify.
One real example is that all users would benefit from alternative competitive web browsers on iOS but they can't have it.
The company that owns both the original console and the copyrighted game is free to publish a game that runs on top of an emulator. Sega has plenty of games on the App Store that are basically the emulator bundled with the game image.
I do think both types of users can co-exist on the same platform. People of all knowledge levels use Windows & Android.
This is false.
An eco system can easily contain a locked down channel for installing programs as well as an open channel to side-load.
It doesn't really.
Actually Playgrounds is pretty amazing. And you can definitely spin up a development platform in AWS and then Remote Desktop from your iPad or access via Coda or similar Terminal tools.
The point is that certain parts of our society are not technical and will never be technical. Despite the expectations and wishes of a tiny minority of technical people.
Perhaps a locked-down Microsoft store would have had all kinds of ancillary benefits such as freeing up all the money spent padding their bottom line and dealing with externalities (malware cleanup, etc) and redirecting it towards having competitive open-source/GPL products for regular users. Perhaps all the forgotten OSes that died out due to Microsoft's dominant position would have found their fanbases and survived (OS/2 Warp, AmigaOS, BeOS, etc.) and the web would have avoided the IE6 problem that was due to Microsoft's prevalence.
Microsoft may have brought computing to the masses in the 90's due to Windows prevalence in that era, but assuming the web wouldn't have happened without them is a bit much.
The web is such a killer app, that if MS blocked it, it would be a problem for MS, not the web, imho.
Also IANAL, but given that MS launched a competing service - The Microsoft Network - this seems like a huge anti-trust issue.
The combination of consumer demand for web access + anti-trust would probably crush MS, and it would have to provide access.
Another factor is that Windows was always a target for hackers, so it's virtually certain there'd be some jailbreaking solution that everyone would use if MS started blocking access to killer apps like web access.
MS was a near monopoly, but there were enough exceptions that people were aware how amazing the web is.
Finally, if MS took the Walled Garden approach, it's easy to argue it wouldn't be the monopoly it was. MS benefited immensely from its platform being "free" (as in pirated) and "open" (as in hackable and insecure).
There was a company who took the other approach. Its name is Apple and it wasn't doing too well against MS in 1995.
But that's all beside the point, the web was a killer app because it was available. Microsoft could have killed it with the same policies as iOS long before it was ever popular. And not by targeting it specifically for competitive reasons but just because it would have been against the very same rules we take for granted now. It wouldn't have even had to be conscious effort.
You can't even get another web browser on iOS! We literally can't even invent the "next web" on mobile. There's no point even trying.
This right here.
I wonder if anyone at Apple even cares. Maybe they’re so pompous they don’t think anyone other than them even could invent the next web.
Whoever does, will have to invent their own hardware too I guess.
There is plently of room for inovation.
Emabrace network protocols and native apps.
Also you had more technical users back then as the majority of the base who really wouldn't have stood for that. Hell, most probably wouldn't have stood for mandatory OS activation via modem if Microsoft had required it.
You could not see AOL pages from CompuServe and vice versa.
I agree that Android is worse, but that doesn't make Apple's store "Good".
As it turns out, giving the user ultimate control is really the best way to handle these types of things.
iOS, on the other hand, restricts its apps heavily - they are sandboxed, can't access other apps' files (no ransomware) and need explicit user permission to meddle with their private data.
Now, yes, exploits exist, but look at macOS - Apple still controls developer certificates and can pull the plug on misbehaving developers. An alternative to the app store wouldn't be nearly as devastating as win32.
You raise an interesting point about Android malware. Does it stem from the fact that Android apps can access the filesystem?
Since Android 7, apps cannot any longer access filesystem outside their APK installation directory. All accesses must be done via SAF APIs.
I still prefer that personally than the crippled smartphones.
Some people agree with your views and there are products and software distributions in the market to satisfy them. Some people prefer the way Apple does things. Everyone's preferences are being catered for, and that is wonderful.
There were viruses? Yes. 37 IE toolbars? Of course! But consider for a moment what we have today instead:
Instead of the simple and (comparatively) mostly harmless viruses we now have ransomware.
Instead of kazaa installing spyware we have the OS itself trying to phone home.
Instead of having a virus to delete random files, you now have one of the Big 4 delete stuff from your device without asking you.
You say we had crapware we had to avoid back then, I see that today we install the crapware ourselves and consider it a treat. Back then when you bought a piece of software you owned it. You didn't have micro transactions and DLCs and all these "innovations" that drive "engagement". You didn't have to have data connection to sync something with bluetooth.
Sure there were also some crappy things, but things are not all that better today. We just got used to it.
The reality is >95% of the population don't want to be, don't know how to be, or simply don't have the spare time to be the systems administrator for all of their technology. The computing model that Apple offers with iOS and the App Store is—in effect—the outsourcing of systems administration to a competent third party.
For most people this is not really any different to outsourcing the maintenance of your house to a cleaning service, or the maintenance of your car to a mechanic, or the minding of your children to a daycare provider. For most people the notion of "computing freedom" is not useful or helpful.
I'm the "computer help guy" for my extended family, and believe me, I am very thankful for Apple's approach because the amount of sysadmin-style assistance I've been asked to provide has absolutely plummeted. For many people who just want to browse the internet, an iPad is way better than a Windows PC. There are people in my family for whom I would fear for their bank accounts if they still used a Windows PC. I don't spend a moment's time worrying about the possibility of malware on their iPads.
Personally I enjoy having the ability to write and run programs for the hardware I paid for without having to beg some company for their permission and blessing. As long as I always have that option, I don't mind.
I love that I buy an iPhone and Apple doesn't allow any non-trusted binaries to run on my phone, enforces strict style guidelines (the average app just looks better on my iPhone than Android IMO), has one place where all possible apps are, maintains a distribution channels that allows all my apps to be updated easily, and builds hardware and software that is designed to work together.
I love my iPhone because Apple is such sticklers about apps, design, and creating a consistently nice user experience. The average user doesn't care about how "open" Android is. They just want something that works.
Even if you didn't want to go the walled garden approach, who could look at how Europe treats Android and come to the conclusion that Google made the right decision by being open?
I can see the value in the vetting service to a lot of people, but I just don't understand the idea of embracing a forced restriction on other people that you happen to like yourself.
Here are some benefits to the one-size-fits-all policy Apple uses:
* Developers are forced to comply with Apple's rules. Otherwise companies could develop shitty apps that use private APIs to work around Apple's restrictions and then force customers to open up their devices to use it.
* Apple and every 3rd-party support person/company/family member in the world isn't forced to deal with a steady stream of "Somebody told me to change this setting and now my phone has a virus" support requests.
* People aren't misled (more than they already are) about the safety of the iOS ecosystem by a steady stream of news stories about people who changed the setting and got their phone infected.
This. Apple consistently chooses to make workaround options complex for the purposes of discouraging this sort of activity.
* Deprecated APIs are actually obsoleted and removed; your app won't run in the new OS version and that means people buying hardware can't run your app.
* Right click has long been a hardware feature but off by default, so that apps wouldn't build in non-standard mouse 'gestures'.
* New ITP anti-tracking features in Safari have no off switch The solution to cookie issues is to change how your app works (such that you don't use hidden cross-domain redirects/frames)
* Side loading apps onto iOS devices is not possible without a business profile or the end user having a development environment - and misused business profiles are revoked.
* The option to turn off app signatures has been removed from the UI (not always the case - Minecraft for instance used to tell users to turn app signature verification off globally to work around their lack of app signing).
* Android has a list of permissions you must grant apps in order to install them. iOS on the other hand requires the application to prompt for individual permissions (location information, microphone access, etc), requires a description of why they want that permission, and per App Store guidelines must run with (reduced) functionality should the user say no.
Forcing a perceived "best path" means that the path is going to be the easiest / only way for everyone to follow, and therefore can receive the most attention / most bug fixes / most thought from executives & developers / etc.
Now of course, some people will still disagree about whether that was indeed the best path, and whether it should've been forced. These people strangely never seem to become Apple executives. :)
Supporting obligatory 30% tax on any developer work makes my blood boil. If Apple model wins it will be a disaster for innovation and salaries. I will never buy or recommended Apple products for this reason. It's worth it to me a stand even if user experience is temporarily better.
If it can be used by a major brand, some unscrupulous actor will gently guide my parents through whatever convoluted steps are required to enable it for their seemingly useful app loaded with badware.
I'm glad there's no side channel.
Dev sells app for $0.69, Apple adds a 43% tax on top ($0.30), for a cost to consumer of $0.99 before paying the state/local tax.
> who could look at how Europe treats Android and come to the conclusion that Google made the right decision by being open?
Google was fined on antitrust grounds. I don't see which direction to leap to make that sentence relevant to them being fined.
From the EU’s competition commissioner
> Fine of €4,34 bn to @Google for 3 types of illegal restrictions on the use of Android. In this way it has cemented the dominance of its search engine. Denying rivals a chance to innovate and compete on the merits. It’s illegal under EU antitrust rules. @Google now has to stop it
It's unequivocally a positive if they play by the rules. They fell foul of Europe(who was protecting it's consumers).
Google's not a charity and made the choices they made to get to where they are. Making Android free ensured they quickly became relevant in the emerging mobile market without having to invest massive amounts in designing/making/manufacturing devices (alongside the risks), if doing Apple way. Or if they went the MS way and tried to sell a closed source OS to device manufacturers, those device manufacturers may instead have chosen a different, more polished OS from a company who had more experience/better reputation in that field.
You can drop the scare quotes, it's not "anti-competitive", it's just anti-competitive.
That's my point. They chose the option where everyone wins the most, especially themselves. The alternatives would have set the smartphone industry back several years as Google would struggle to make phones and phone manufactures would struggle to make a halfway-decent operating system. Google's policies are "anti-competitive" in the same sense that charging money for their operating system or enforcing copyright is "anti-competitive." In one case, you're forcing companies to pay for your product. In the other case, you're forcing the companies to follow a set of rules to use your product.
They'd have bought from one of the other mobile OS vendors(Symbian, MS) or made their own (Nokia w/Maemo). It could be argued that Google distributing Android for free(so as to ensure the continued dominance/inclusion of Google Search) did set the smartphone industry back. Who the hell wants to compete against free? Even more so when that "free" is coming from a XXX billion dollar company.
Which is maybe why MS gave up on mobile OS, or Symbian no longer exists or Maemo.
> you're forcing the companies to follow a set of rules to use your product
...and Europe found those rules broke the existing law.
On iOS, you can't do any of that.
How is that not infinitely more anti-competitive? Somehow licensing software to other manufacturers makes you more anti-competitive then owning the entire pipeline?
Yes, giving out a product for free to kill off existing competitors and prevent potential competitors from gaining a foothold is anti-competitive.
I don't support either, but there is a clear reason why what google did got caught by anti trust laws.
Apple consistently gives its apps more permissions than normal developers they get. They also reject apps that interfere with business fields they are in/eyeing.
This how software engineering works.
If I have a publicly released module, I define a public methods that are my interface and private methods that my interface uses.
Of course as the implementator I’m going to have “private APIs” that only I use. In the next release, I might change the entire underlying implementation get rid of private methods, etc. but still not change the public api. You as a developer shouldn’t depend on “private apis” and Apple should have no obligation not to break apps that depend on them.
To be even more blunt. There is no such thing as a “private API”. The Application Programmers Interface is the published spec that developers should use. By definition, if it’s private, it’s not an “API”.
Post-Gingerbread, Google has put the vast majority of their development into the Google Play APIs, which are not open and are only available to partners. This means that use of things like chromecast (for instance) are restricted to apps distributed through the Play store, and handsets running partner builds of Android.
I'm tired of signing up for subscriptions and going through a series of dark patterns on a zillion websites to figure out how to manage and cancel my subscriptions. The worst is when there's one click to subscribe and they make you phone in to an annoying retention specialist to cancel.
As a developer I hate it :/
+1 = I will never build (or invest into) business that is built on a single platform controlled by someone else.
That's roughly $40 per year that goes into Apple's pocket on an $11/month subscription in the name of marginal security.
That all falls apart if you're an over-thinker, penny-wise, or a skeptic, though. By virtue of having some tech-savvy, you are automatically sort-of excluded from the target marketing for most platform/app/marketplace stacks. You want to pick and chose to try and gain efficiency or cost-savings or whatever.
That said, these benefits have an expiration date. I don't think the app store cut has been a ripoff for its entire history, but if the temperature of the room has shifted toward hostility, it might be that they've spent the goodwill they earned with their innovation and now it's time for a more sustainable long term arrangement.
We can find middle ground between "Apple did nothing for me" and "Apple deserves 30% of software sales for eternity"
Many fewer folks use Spotify on desktop OSs, it's common for Netflix.
Netflix is well positioned to fight Apple over this, and if they call Apple's bluff, Apple will likely be forced to consider.
They do for quite a few items in their catalog - probably not even a majority, but quite a few nonetheless.
Of course, there is no way they would use that negotiated the percentage for the rest of us.
I think it would take an anti-trust action of some sort to cause a dent here, but I'm not holding my breath.
Well, it's not like iPhone users can't simply buy Androids. I have mostly iOS household with a few Androids sitting around - mostly unpowered and gathering dust (kids use them mainly to watch Netflix on road trips).
I think Netflix has a strong position to negotiate with Apple over this.
Its true that both companies have a strong position. Netflix just doesn’t have quite as much leverage in theirs.
They’ll be allowed to move the purchase off the App Store just like Amazon / Spotify have done, so long as they don’t link to it directly from the app. The question that remains is when will smaller apps start to follow suit, and will they be able to get away with what Netflix / Amazon / Spotify do, and what will be the effect of this pressure? It’s hard for an unknown developer to say “hey, actually, go to my website to do this and heh, sorry but, I can’t link you there!” But for behemoths, it’s almost trivial to do so. There will still be user drop off there even for behemoths, just likely not as bad.
If they are talking about disabling it system wide vs disabling it for a single application, is this not pretty irresponsible? Lots of kids play Fortnite, saying "hey to play your favourite game just disable this security setting" to millions of them seems risky.
If you were more profit motivated, you might argue the problem is allowing externally installed software. Granted they foolishly obtained too large of a market share to have any say in that anymore.
If you care about users though, yes, the cost barriers for devs are a problem no matter who puts them up. Ideally the cost is in the phone purchase, not the continued use.
Many of us became deeply involved in tech because some person (thanks Pat Volkerding!) or organization gave us a system were we could do whatever the hell we wanted.
Well... you can phrase it like some life lesson, sure. In reality 1% of 3 million kids clicking on 'Free vbux!!' and converting is 30,000 kids having malware ridden phones, doing god knows what to god knows who.
Is increasing the profits of malware distributors by so much really worth some hand-wavy "teach kids to become a grown up" lesson?
Also, it's not just the kids. By any margin.
Well, most of those kids will run outdated Android versions with many known vulnerabilities. And they cannot update their phones, because they have locked firmware and walled-garden OS, largely put in place to make them buy new phones.
Again, the proper solution beyond a good security baseline is to educate people.
This is one of the biggest problems with the mobile landscape, with Apple, Google, and OEMs culpable to various degrees. It's deeply unethical, selfish, and wasteful.
"The beatings will continue until your security improves!"
Surely you can understand why letting people do whatever the hell they want might not be the best thing when people's personal and financial data is on the line.
As a default no. But there should always be an option (with appropriate warnings) to do with your device what you want to do with it.
might not be the best thing when people's personal and financial data is on the line.
Even on a walled garden device people will open phishing mails and log in to phishing websites. There will always be attack vectors. Beyond a reasonable baseline in security (sandboxing between applications, etc.), the most important thing to do is to educate people on proper security practices.
A lot of computer knowledge comes from trying something, failing, and then learning how to recover.
I learned a lot from bricking my laptop in my early teens downloading roms and warez, and then understanding whats safe and what's not, and with little long term consequences.
And much of the bad behavior, such as simple apps bombarding people with ads, is standard in programs found in mobile app stores now anyway.
You don't need to download spyware with virtually any mobile phone, pretty much everyone out there is doing already(recent ref: google maps)
I'm all for more freedoms when installing apps, but Google Maps isn't the same as this other shit.
It's not a system wide setting, it's an app-specific setting (that is, it's for the app you wish to be able to install other apps.)
Setting it to “allow” for the default browser and leaving it that way is something of an issue, though.
As far as I know, real "app installers" are purpose-built programs such as Amazon Appstore and F-Droid.
There's a bigger difference on iOS, if a similar setting was even available, because Apple curates much more strongly than Google.